HAMBURG (FIBA U17 World Championship) – It was the meeting of two teams that returned winless from the first day of group B action. Australia could not match up with Poland's (54:71) big men, while Canada fell to hosts Germany in a highly intense and entertaining thriller that came down to the wire (68:69).
Neither team wanted to get into early trouble as two losses would considerably narrow their chances to advance to the quarter-finals. In the beginning it seemed as though Canada run away with ease but Australia did well on defense, keeping the north Americans' inside players out of the painted area.
Nonetheless it took nearly until halftime, before Australia took the lead for the first time in the game thanks to a Mitchell Norton jumper.
Thanks to 5-of-7 shooting from three point range in the third quarter, Australia paced by and expanded their lead. But Canada forward Negus-Christopher Webster Chan got himself going just in time, scoring seven points in two minutes as his team regained the scoreboard advantage.
With time running down, Australia tried to pressure the ball, which led to easy fastbreak points for Webster-Chan and co, as they bagged their first victory in group B.
Guy Molloy, Australia head coach: "It's going to be tough, we still have to play Spain, Germany and Poland, which gives you an idea about how strong this group is"
Roy Rana, Canada head coach: "After we lost against Germany yesterday it was important to bounce back. We are now looking and playing more positive"
FIBA / JB